Dancer, choreographer and film-maker Gabrielle Lamb (above with choreographer Luca Veggetti, photo by Kokyat) will be offering donation-based classes at the Gibney Dance Studios on July 8, 9, 11 and 12 at 10:30 AM. Gabrielle has a space grant from Gibney and she has already used part of her time there creating a fascinating duet entitled TwoFold which I was lucky enough to be able to see during its creative process. You can view this work, danced by Gabrielle and Giorgia Bovo, here. Gabrielle's also been creating a film for Ballet X.
Gabrielle writes on the Gibney blog: "I am especially excited about the final component of my grant: my community project. Thanks to the generosity of the Gibney Dance Center, in July I will be teaching a series of classes which will be available to dancers on a pay-what-you-can-afford basis. All proceeds will go to City Harvest. In preparation for a choreographic residency at Hubbard Street Dance Chicago last year, I began constructing the framework for a contemporary dance class that includes elements of conditioning and strengthening, while encouraging freer use of the head and greater fluidity of the spine in three dimensions. Starting out, I had the help of a Laban Movement Analyst and Pilates instructor, and among my other important influences have been my yoga practice of many years and my novice explorations of hip-hop and capoeira.
The warm-up starts on the floor and builds up slowly through sitting and medium levels. It demands whole-body coordination, with a particular emphasis on arm and core strength, in order to help the dancer move fluently to and from the floor. I alternate choreographed exercises and etudes with improvisations structured to introduce unfamiliar movement concepts and to allow dancers to explore their own creativity as movers. I have since expanded and developed the work in classes I have taught at the Joffrey Ballet School and at BalletX in Philadelphia. And I am very happy to be teaching at the Gibney Dance Center on July 8,9,11,and 12, from 10:30-noon. This is a valuable opportunity for me to meet new dancers and incorporate fresh influences into my work, while making a contribution to a very worthy organization."
Of the studios at Gibney, Gabrielle writes: "I have felt so lucky to have had access to these grand, sunny spaces at the Gibney Dance Center. These are not just big spaces; they are big spaces that inspire, with their high ceilings and their big windows looking out on the elegant neighboring buildings. I have felt on the one hand that I had the time for play and experimentation, and on other hand that I wanted to make the most of every hour."
I first saw Gabrielle at Christopher Wheeldon's studio when MORPHOSES were preparing for their 2009 peformance with Martha Wainwright in Central Park. I picked up immediately on Gabrielle's unique energy, a ballerina steeped in the classic style yet vividly contemporary in movement and persona. She appeared with MORPHOSES again in 2010, dancing in Pontus Lidberg's VESPERTINE at The Guggenheim. Her MORPHOSES connection continues in 2011 when she will dance in Luca Veggetti's BACCHAE at The Joyce, premiering on October 25th. Also this Autumn, Gabrielle will appear in Emery LeCrone's new ballet to music of Elliott Carter for The Guggenheim's Works & Process series.
Here at Oberon's Grove, we'll be following the development of both the Morphoses BACCHAE and the LeCrone/Works & Process piece. Meanwhile I'm planning to check out Gabrielle's class at Gibney (I'll be watching, not participating) and would love to see lots of New York's dancers from all genres there.